Blue Mist Short Story: Little Zion Episode 1.
By: Mark Russell (a.k.a Russ Xavier) Downing
(Author's Note: This short story will come in three or four different pieces, also you do not have to have read the Blue Mist Chronicles to understand this spin off.)
It's the year 1626A.B.M. (After the Blue Mist) during the month of September. Our little story starts in the city of Little America. It's a city that, in it's entirety, covers what was formerly Cuba. The city is one of the most advanced in the new world. All of it though, instead of the eastern side of the island which was covered in abandoned and condemned buildings.
This city of ruins is known as Little Zion. The homeless roam the entire area and many little gangs have sprung up and split the miniature city into zones. The young Russ Xavier was apart of one of these gangs when he was twelve and he was slowly rising to the top. Fight after fight he moved his way up, using his special abilities to win them. Yet, in a world of super powered humans you can only go so high up till you get halted in mid flight…
It had been raining and the ground was wet. A group of people stood in a circle around two kids in the small confines of some random alleyway. One had silver hair and the other's was jet black; the two looked as if they had been brawling for quite some time. The people that encircled the two were shouting random profanities and egging the two on. The one with the short silver hair, Russ, ran at his opponent and swung a flame engulfed fist, but his enemy easily sidestepped the blow.
"Come on now Russ." said the fourteen year old Kenno "Is that all you got?"
With a growl Russ turned to be met by Kenno's fist. Russ fell over backwards and landed against the building on the opposite side of the alleyway they were in.
"Stop dancing around twinkle toes and fight!" Russ yelled throwing a flaming ball that missed it's marked and nailed a random on looker. The crowd burst into laughter and started to disperse.
It was obvious who had won this little sparring match. Kenno turned to walk away and suddenly fell forward when Russ tackled and began to pummel him. Lucky for Kenno his fists had gone out. Suddenly a white ball of fire exploded into Russ' side sending him end-over-end off of Kenno. "Thanks Snow." said Kenno as he stood. Russ' vision was blurry and at first all he saw was the slender legs of a young girl. Those legs belonged to the angelic and deadly fifteen year old Snow Dragon. "Finish him for me will you?" said Kenno in a nonchalant voice.
ten years later
Russ stood outside of a shady looking bar, his hands in his blue jeans pockets He leaned on the wall to the left of the bar's main entrance and his blonde headed friend, Chino, stood at it's right. "Tell me again Chino," Russ said while scratching his head through his buzzed short silver hair, "why exactly are we working here?"
"It's easy money." Replied Russ' best friend of seven years. Russ sighed as he looked over at Chino.
"You ever gonna' cut your hair man?" Russ said as he reached over and pulled Chino's hair slightly. Chino's hair reached a few inches past his shoulders.
"Are you ever goin' to let yours grow out?" Chino questioned in return. Russ' glanced his eyes up as if to look on top of his head. In all honesty he liked his buzzed silver hair and it's matching goatee.
He didn't like it because of how it made him feel, but he liked it because of the slightly threatening image it gave him. Russ shrugged and leaned against the wall again.
"It depends on how I'd look." Suddenly Russ' cell rang the tune of "Iron Man" in digital beeps. Russ reached into his blue jean pocket and pulled out his old phone.
"Ello'?" Russ said bluntly. "Oh, hey baby wassup'?"
Chino sighed and walked into the bar, pushing the door open harshly. He didn't like to here Russ and his girlfriend, Saria, talk on the phone. Besides, tonight was a slow night so he figured he'd get a few drinks. When he entered his nose was battered with the sent of pot, tobacco, and cheap cologne. All of the tables had their chairs up on top of them, a few people sat at the bar, and a lone stripper danced to some old song mostly out of boredom.
Chino sighed and pulled a twenty out of his black denim jean's pocket while walking up to the cat walk where the lone dancer swayed. She had long blonde hair and wore red and black lingerie. Chino reached up and stuck the twenty in her thong.
"Here, Samantha, no one's watchin' so come on down." The stripper, Samantha, looked down at her blue eyed admirer and with a smile said: "Ok luver be out in a sec'!" Samantha then made her way backstage.
Chino shook his head then turned and walked to the bar, sitting down on one of the many dark black leather stools. The purple-ish pink haired bartender, Neko, came up to him.
"Ya' want anything red?" she asked making a rather pointless joke at Chino's choice of shirt color.
"Beer for me and a-"
"Pint of Vodka for Russ?" interrupted Neko, "Do you two ever buy anything else?"
"Nope," Chino said with a smile and then added, "Who said we're buyin' anyways?" in a slightly ashamed voice.
"What!?" yelled Neko as she returned from the back of the bar, "You're putting it on your tab again?" Neko sat the two bottles down. "Chino, babe, you do know that your tabs over three grand right?" Chino hung his head in shame.
"We drink a lot..." said Chino with a sigh. Neko wiped her hands on her brown and gray shirt. Russ walked in the bar and just barely caught his vodka bottle before it flew into his face.
"Dude!" Russ exclaimed, "W-T-F man?" Russ stood there staring at his friend. Chino pointed at him and with a serious face said: "It's your turn to pay off the tab."
Russ stood there for a few seconds...then passed out after remembering how much the two owed. The last thought that went through his head was:
"Should I rob a bank?"
five hours later, around midnight
Russ stood in the empty locker room of a run down high school gym which was now known as the Midnight Circle. Strange, yes, but in this city of ruins Russ had heard of weirder. He tied on a black head band and smirked as he looked himself over in a mirror. He knew that after he fought it wouldn't matter how he looked, but he knew that there would be women in the crowd. Most important of all, HIS woman would be in the crowd; Saria Misonay.
"To hell if I'ma' lose!"
Russ pulled on some black and red leather, fingerless, gloves. He then pulled on a dark green muscle shirt that showed off his toned arms. Now he wasn't mister macho with massive muscles but he was fit. Think a pro light weight boxer body type. He wore Chino's black denim jeans that he had "borrowed" and a pair of old school Converses.
Russ stood and walked out into the school's gym. The gym was a two-story building with a basket ball court dead in the center of it. In the middle of the court sat an over sized boxing ring. The second story was open in the middle and was basically for onlookers to watch down on the fighting matches that were taking place from the balcony. Russ stood outside of the ring as the two opponents that were inside went at each other. Russ checked the roster, shrugged, and then walked towards the stairs to the second level; his match was three matches away.
One match later
Russ stood in the far corner of the second floor viewing area; rubbing his goatee and scowling. Saria had to work the graveyard shift and she couldn't come and watch him. As he stared into space a slender figure walked through his field of view. All he really caught of it was the long, ankle reaching, white hair that flowed by. Suddenly his memory snapped into full attention and the memory of a lovely young woman flashed through his mind.
He quickly maneuvered his way through the mass of audience members. He followed not only the fleeting image, but the heavenly aroma of her perfume. He knew whom he was following, he knew it'd lead to trouble, and he knew that trouble would make him miss the round. Yet some feeling in his gut guided him onward...that is until he was yanked into the air by his throat.
"Oh shit." Russ thought.
"Hey Snow!" called the young, muscular black man that held Russ up by his neck, "You got an admirer!" Russ flinched, he hated what was coming, but he had been asking for it.
"What is it James?" came the sweet yet venomous voice of Russ' interest; Snow Dragon. Her long white hair came down to cover her right eye, but Russ never forgot the color of her eyes. One visible pale blue orb looked him up and down.
"Well, well, well...How have you been Xavier?" Russ flinched at these words.
"Oh shit." he sputtered before being thrown off the second story viewing area.
Russ fell for all of two or three seconds, but in that short amount of time he found his balance, landed on his feet, rolled backwards, and stopped down on one knee. The two bloodied up fighters that had already occupied the ring grew quiet along with the entire crowd. Russ stood just as the resounding thud of the muscular James' landing echoed throughout the empty high school gym. The two fighters looked at each other then made their way out of the ring.
The shirtless black Adonis, James, took a boxer's stance as inch long spikes grew out of his knuckles. He shook his right leg to loosen his black kimono styled pants, then planted his black booted foot back on the ring.
"You want some?" Russ' fist caught fire as he mimicked James' stance, "Come'n get some!" The two slowly shuffled towards one another when James dashed forward. Russ spun around his opponent and kicked him in the back. James' Red and black dread-locks wavered from the blow. Up in the second floor viewing area Snow Dragon let a slight chuckle escape her lips.
"His style has changed." she said as she brushed some dust off of her black tank-top with her black, fingerless gloved hands. Below the match continued as Russ spun to dodge a right hook from James. James winked one of his brown eyes to taunt Russ who then went on the offensive. Right jab, left hook, upper cut, a flurry of rabbit punches and then a kick. Each flaming punch landed true, but James caught Russ' foot and flung him out of the ring.
James' chest was burnt and bloody, a few drops of his crimson life liquid dripped from his chin as well. But never the less he hopped down from the ring and started to stride over to his winded opponent. That's when Chino stepped in, randomly appearing in front of James.
"He has a match coming up James." Chino stated in a serious tone, "And I need the money he'll make as well." James smiled and stood to his full height which was a foot taller then the 5'8' Chino and stated:
"I respect you Chino, you know that."
"But that shit of a friend of yours was following around your brother's gal'."
Russ got up and ran at James, but the red dress wearing Samantha stopped him.
"Just let him fight." Chino glared across the ring at the black suit clad, smirking, Kenno, "I'll have a chat with my brother."
thirty minutes later
Russ exited out the back door of the gym into an alley way. He was beat up bad, which was easy to tell due to the fact that he tripped and caught himself on the adjacent wall. Yet he had a smile on his face. He had won his match, and against a person that controlled water at that. Russ turned and leaned back against the building.
"So tired…" Russ groaned.
"Pussy." came that familiar sweet/venomous voice. Russ opened one eye, and looked her up and down.
"Black tank-top, black short-shorts, black shoes..." Russ closed his eyes again, "You wearin' black lacy underwear too?"
"They're pink." said Snow Dragon sarcastically.
"What?" Both of Russ' eyes opened. His perverted tendencies coming into play. Suddenly Snow Dragon was kneeling down in front of Russ; looking him eye to eye.
"So why is it every time we meet you're stalking me?" she asked with a sadistic grin. Russ scowled at her. He was beat up bad (believe it, you could tell) and was very tired. The only things that could keep him awake was either a major ass-kicking or sex, and he knew he was about to get one or the other.
"It's cause' I wanna' jump yer' bones, aight'?" Russ got slapped, "That and I still hold a grudge."
"A grudge, eh?" Snow Dragon cooed. She leaned in close to where her lips were right next to Russ' left ear. "Against lil' old me?" she said softly. Russ growled in response.
Snow Dragon placed her hand on the ground between Russ' legs. She knew what she was doing, and she liked watching Russ squirm. "Are you still mad that Kenno found us?" Russ heard her words and his mind jumped to him and Snow Dragon together, naked, under the sheets of a bed. They kissed, touched, explored. Then Kenno kicked in the door to the room.
Russ snapped back to reality when Snow Dragon started to trace his cross shaped scar that resided on his left cheek with her free hand. "Or maybe..." Snow Dragon smirked, "It's that he told your little girlfriend on you?" Now Russ' mind focused on the sight of a hurt and weeping Saria. Her face hidden in her hands and her auburn brown hair fell forward onto her knees. Russ didn't want to see tears in her emerald eyes again.
"Stop it." Russ said to Snow Dragon, but in reply she bit his ear. "I said quit." Russ protested. Snow Dragon chuckled and kissed him, her hand on his cheek. Russ resisted at first, but went along with it after a short while. Once again Saria's hurt expression appeared in his mind and he pushed Snow Dragon away. She stood up, shocked, but then returned to her cool, sadistically evil self.
"You want her over me?" at this Russ looked away. "You are a very confused man Russ Xavier." Snow Dragon turned to walk away, "Make up your mind...soon. Or one of us will regret these upcoming days of our lives." with that she left Russ sitting in the alley way.
"You always did talk in riddles," Russ mumbled to himself as he stood up, "Bitch."
three days later
Russ awoke in his room. He went to sit up, but a small amount of weight kept him from moving. He looked down and saw Saria asleep, using him as a pillow. Russ thought about getting up, but thought it better not to because both of the two were more or less likely naked. All Russ could do was sigh and go back to sleep.
Meanwhile over in Chino's room he was already up and moving. Wearing nothing but a pair of jeans and socks it was easy to tell he had just woke up. His room didn't have posters all over the walls like Russ'. Nor was it as much of a mess either. Chino scratched the back of his head and walked over to his window, leaning on his computer desk.
He peered out it as if there was something along the city sky line that he was looking for. Chino opened his window and heard the sounds of the early morning within Little Zion. Suddenly there was a rough clanging noise coming from below. Chino looked down to see a person climbing up the fire escape that passed by his window. The young man stopped outside of Chino's window, a smile on his face.
"Sup' Chino?" asked the dark green eyed man, "How's it hangin'?" Chino smirked, pushing some of his long blonde hair out of his eyes.
"Not much Zero," He retorted, "Low and to the left as usual." At this the young man, Zero, laughed.
"Always the same come back." he chuckled. His hair was spiked down wards and was black with green highlights. A red and black checkered scarf was wrapped loosely around his neck.
"Never gets old does it?" Chino replied. "So," Chino said in a more serious tone, "What's been happening?" At this Zero frowned. He crawled in through Chino's window and sauntered over to his bed, plopping down on it; Chino watching him the entire way. "So what's the bad news?" Chino asked. Zero sighed and laid back on Chino's bed, scratching his stomach through his off-gray tank-top.
"To be honest nothings really happening." Chino stood there and scratched his chin.
"That's not good." Chino grumbled. "The last time it was quiet like this..."
"Yeah, I know." Chino and Zero sat there, quiet. Nothing made a sound except for the outside city ramble and the continuous ticking of Chino's clock.
"Do you think we're the target again?" Zero continued after about two minutes.
"More or less likely." Chino replied worriedly.